The team

As the GP federation for Newcastle, we employ 27 people across a range of roles including practice-based social prescribing navigators and link workers, and finance and management support staff. The following people are based in our central office in Gosforth. To get in touch with any of our team, please use our contact form.

Christian Townend RRC

Christian Townend RRC

Christian has worked for NGPS since its inception in 2014, first as a director and latterly as the chief executive, a position he has held since September 2017. He has 10 years experience of working in the NHS as a practice manager in a busy GP surgery in the north of the city. During this period he also worked as part of the Newcastle North East Executive for the CCG during its early formative years. Christian’s role is to work with the directors of the company as a strategic executive decision-maker to promote and support general practice across Newcastle-upon-Tyne.

Before his time in primary care, Christian was a member of HM Forces where he worked for 31 years as an Officer in the Royal Army Medical Corps.

Dr Antony Moore

Antony Moore

Antony is a GP at Grainger Medical Group having trained in Newcastle, qualifying in 1988.

After 20 years as a GP partner in Jesmond, he developed a portfolio career in general practice and occupational medicine.

He is the chair of NGPS which he drove the development of in Newcastle six years ago.

Rebecca Haynes

Rebecca Haynes

Rebecca joined NGPS in 2017 and is our chief operating officer. She is passionate about the NHS, particularly around supporting primary care and the wider community.

She previously worked for Deloitte, chartered as an accountant and managed audits for multinational FTSE 100 companies. Rebecca advised NHS trust chief execs, Chairs and leadership teams on strategy and governance as part of Deloitte’s National NHS Board Advisory Team before leaving to join the NHS. She also spent five years as part of the senior R&D Finance team at Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals.

Rebecca plays an active role in women’s groups in the North East including acting as a Trustee for Tyneside Women’s Health for three years and as a serving Trustee Treasurer for Rape Crisis. She lives in Whitley Bay with her husband John and children Seb and Annabelle and enjoys netball and ballet.

Will Thompson


Will joined NGPS as our PCN Lead in November 2019 after leaving the British Army where he served as an officer in the Royal Army Medical Corp for 11 years. In that time, he worked with military healthcare professionals delivering both primary and secondary care in the UK and whilst deployed on operations abroad.

In 2015, Will spent a year working with Hambleton Richmondshire and Whitby CCG as a project manager in their transformation team.

Will lives in High Heaton with his wife Sara and two young boys Henry and Benjamin. He is a keen cyclist and also enjoys fermenting food.

Kate Vogelsang

Kate Vogelsang

Kate has worked for NGPS as our comms manager since April 2019.

She has 25 years’ experience in communications, marketing, and public relations – 18 years working in the public sector – and also runs her own communications consultancy.

She supports NGPS to engage with our members and partners through several communication channels including our website, social media, events, and publications.

Kate lived and worked in London for 20 years before making the move to the North East in 2016 and is a qualified football coach.

Michael Waugh

Michael Waugh

Michael joined NGPS in July 2017 after working in NHS mental health services for 30 years. He has held various operational management positions including in the Patient Safety Department as an urgent care complaints investigator. He manages the NGCCG commissioned general practice social prescribing service provided at all Newcastle GP Practices.

Michael lives in Sunderland with his wife, they have two children and are blessed with five grandchildren. When he gets any spare time Michael is passionate about all genres of music and cooking Italian cuisine.

Alex Woodmass

Alex Woodmass

Alex has worked for NGPS since January 2018 as the office manager. He has worked in various roles in the NHS including project support officer at Newcastle Gateshead CCG and NHS Direct as a call handler. He supports NGPS in its day to day operations and provides the administrative support to primary care services carried out in general practice and to the GPs who work in the urgent treatment centres in Newcastle.

Alex enjoys watching most sports and is a fan of Newcastle United. He also enjoys nights out, going to see live bands and has a passion for travel and exploring new places.

Lisa Wooton

Lisa joined NGPS in February 2020 as the clinical governance manager.  She previously worked in various roles in a large national mental health charity for 15 years, including business development, tendering and all aspects of governance including carrying out audits and incident management.  More recently she worked for NECS (North of England Commissioning Support Unit) providing governance support around equality and diversity for 10 CCG’s.

She supports us with maintaining robust systems and processes for all elements of the corporate and clinical governance framework, to ensure that we discharge all of our statutory duties.

Lisa lives in Sunderland with her husband and three children and enjoys socialising and eating out.

ANNIE walTon


Annie Walton started working at NGPS in September 2019 as the primary care network finance manager.

She previously worked at NHS Sunderland CCG for five years in finance and very closely with GP practices.

She supports the networks with all things finance related including monthly dashboards, payments and cashflow, forecasting, project funding, and many other ad hoc areas.

nadine riddell

Nadine joined NGPS in June 2021 as an Assistant Accountant and will be supporting the Primary Care Network Finance Manager.

She has 7+ years of previous Primary Care experience in various practices and roles and is very much looking forward to beginning her financial training with NGPS.

sarah levison

Sarah Levison

Sarah Joined NGPS in September 2020 as the Project Manager for the Outer West Primary Care Network. Sarah will work directly with the Clinical Director to take the network forward through the various project streams, such as embedding additional roles into the practices.

She previously worked at Newcastle University for 16 years in a range of roles from running a one-stop shop for students, lead for education for an academic school, and working in educational governance.

Sarah does this role alongside running a small business providing triathlon coaching and swimming lessons. She lives in Great Park with her husband and enjoys sport, gardening, and baking.

Jo chakal

Jo Chakal joined us in September 2020 as the new executive assistant (EA) to the NGPS management team. She is also the EA for the primary care network (PCN) boards across the city.

Jo’s background is as an NHS PA working formerly at North Tees & Hartlepool NHS FT, then at NECS, and latterly as PA to the chief operating officer at Newcastle Hospitals. She has also held a part-time role with CNTW NHS FT as a learning disabilities nurse bank support worker for the past 20 years.

ALIstair mccubbin

Alistair McCubbin

Alistair is the NGPS intern and started in July 2020. He is working with us as a team administrator while taking a break from his degree in music at Durham University. He supports the NGPS team in various office and administrative tasks including helping to monitor and compile financial data for NGPS, its practices, and the primary care networks.

Alistair has a great passion for music and plays a number of string instruments. He is a member of various gigging bands and is the president of the Durham University Folk Society. He also regularly sings classical music throughout the North East.

emily fisher


Emily is our Operations Support and started with the team in October 2020, after completing the NHS Graduate Management Training Scheme.  In that time, she worked as an Assistant Service Line Manager and Assistant Locality Manager in acute and mental health trusts, focusing on operational management, service improvement, and project management.

At NGPS, she works directly with the Operations Manager to deliver projects, including Covid ‘Hot’ Services and Extended Access. Emily lives in Northumberland with her partner Dave. She enjoys the great outdoors, has a love for animals and has previously worked as a zookeeper.